Wow. That is a tough schedule. It’s no easy feat to end your season with the Houston Texans, Green Bay Packers, and New England Patriots. There really aren’t many games that New York Jets fans can look at on the schedule and feel comfortable that they can easily win. That is why it’s time to look at the realistic expectations for 2018.
2018 New York Jets: What Are the Most Realistic Expectations?
7-9. That should be the Jets expectations going into this year. Besides obviously continuing to develop their young talent, including rookie quarterback Sam Darnold, the Jets need to start adding to the win column.
In 2017, Gang Green finished the season 5-11. This year, with decent moves in free agency and another draft behind them, it’s time for the Jets to improve.
Looking at the schedule, the Jets will most likely get swept by the Patriots (like every other year) but will hopefully split the series with the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins. That brings the Jets to two wins through six games.
The games that the Jets should be able to win include the Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, and Chicago Bears. Gang Green should be able to beat those teams. If they can’t, there is a bigger problem. Though Denver and Cleveland will be improved this season, New York will be too. It should win those games to bring its win total to five.
The next set of games are the untouchables. These are games New York won’t win unless those teams suffer freak injuries to its star players. They include contests against the Packers, Texans, Minnesota Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars. Assuming everyone stays healthy on those teams, a Jets loss should be almost guaranteed.
The simulation so far has the Jets sitting at 5-8 after taking the division and easier games to predict out of the schedule. The remaining games are against the Detroit Lions, Indianapolis Colts, and Tennessee Titans.
The Colts were included in this group because it is still unclear what Andrew Luck will look like in 2018. If Luck doesn’t play the Jets should be able to count that game in the win column. If he takes part and returns to his elite form, it will cause numerous problems for a young Jets defense.
The Titans and Lions are both interesting teams to look at. Both have quarterbacks that were drafted high and haven’t really lived up to their expectations, yet can still drop 400 yards and three touchdowns on any given Sunday. Second, a mediocre supporting cast surrounds them both. Depending on how good the Jets are in 2018, both of these games could be wins or both could be losses.
Assuming the Jets can somehow snag two of those three games, that would bring their final record to 7-9 for the 2018 season. It’s obviously not what fans want, but it would show some forward momentum for a team that has lacked that for the better part of the last decade. The process is slow, but there is hope for the future.